Forward movement for Indian aviation industry in 2013

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SummaryCurrently, airlines which have operated on domestic routes for five years and have 20 aircraft can fly abroad.

to enhance the number of flights being operated to these states.

Giving a big boost to air connectivity in Tier-II and III cities, government cleared a wide-ranging policy aimed at creating international and regional aviation hubs in the country. An Inter-Ministerial Committee was also set up to ensure establishment of facilities like immigration, customs, provisions for visa-on-arrival and foreign exchange, involving various Ministries.

Ankur Bhatia, Executive Director of Bird Group and CII's aviation panel chairman, told PTI that the Indian aviation industry has felt the brunt of aggressive price cuts, rising costs, growing jet fuel price, depreciating rupee value and high interest payment.

"In my opinion, improving the infrastructural constraints will bring down the high aviation cost and help stimulate overall growth of the industry," he said, adding that there was an urgent need for strong regional infrastructure which foreign airlines will look for before investing.

Another industry expert, Amber Dubey, head of consultancy firm KPMG's Aerospace and Defense division, said the new year would be marked by the launch or expansion of operations by Etihad, AirAsia, Singapore Airlines (SIA) and Tiger Airways - along with their Indian partners.

"We also expect one more FDI deal in an existing airlines... We also expect systemic reforms in the area of ATF and MRO taxes and in promotion of regional no-frills airports," he said.

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